If your family schedule looks a little too much like a battle plan, you're not alone. Use these strategies to find space.

By Leslie Goldman
September 07, 2018
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When most of us hear the term “professional organizer,” we picture a decluttering maven who can alphabetize a pantry and color-code a closet in no time. But Sarah Giller Nelson, owner of Less Is More, an organizing service based in Miami and Chicago, says that lately, more and more parents are seeking her out for help organizing something arguably scarier than their chaotic basements: their crammed schedules.

“Parents’ calendars are packed with school activities, birthday parties, sports events—plus they’re juggling their own personal and professional duties and trying to keep track of their partner’s,” she says.

The first question Nelson asks these clients is, “Do you feel like you’re always busy but never get anything done?” If the answer is "yes" (it usually is), she explains, “It’s time to streamline, improve communication within the family, and carve out space to breathe and just enjoy one another.”

More reason to strive for a happy calendar: Some research shows that planning ahead may be a more effective stress reliever for some people than deep breathing and meditation. So instill some order in your schedule and maximize your time with these expert-vetted tips.

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